Former Avaya Channel Chief to Head Westcon’s EMEA Operations
In January 2012 it was announced Avaya’s head of Worldwide Channels, Jeremy Butt, would be leaving Avaya “to pursue other opportunities.” We now know what those opportunities are: Butt has been tapped to lead Westcon Group’s new EMEA region as executive vice president.
In his new role, Butt will oversee Westcon’s converged European unified communications, European security and Africa/India/Middle East operations, bringing together separate regional units under one EMEA regional unit umbrella, according to Westcon. That includes extending Westcon’s unified communications and security offerings in the region.
His appointment, effective immediately, puts him front and center of Westcon’s operations in a region in which the distributor has seen its brand recognition increase, noted Dean Douglas, president and CEO of Westcon Group, in the release announcing Butt’s position. “For more than two decades, Jeremy has built a reputation as one of the premier executives in the channel. During that time, Westcon has also strengthened our leadership brand across Europe, the Middle East and Africa,” Douglas said. “Jeremy is a great hire for us – as he’ll bring the right mix of experience and leadership necessary to power our next stage of growth.”
Butt’s departure from Avaya, where he led worldwide channel operations since 2008, was somewhat unexpected — while at Avaya, Butt was credited for helping transition the company to a more channel-centric model and guided Avaya and its partners through the company’s acquisition of Nortel’s enterprise business.
After his decision to leave Avaya was announced, Tom Mitchell, Avaya senior vice president and president, Avaya Go to Market, praised Butt’s leadership in ensuring Avaya’s success as a channel-focused organization.
“He came to Avaya to help with a difficult transition from a largely direct sales organization to one that was channel-centric,” Mitchell said. “His success in this is evidenced by the current 78 percent indirect vs. 22 percent direct global sales figures. During that tenure, he also integrated thousands of channel partners that came on board with the Nortel acquisition.”
Butt will be based in Slough, U.K. (also home of the British version of the popular sitcom “The Office”) — a coincidence, I’m sure.